Physics of the Ocean

Bad Honnef Physics School

04 Jul - 09 Jul 2021


Physikzentrum Bad Honnef

Scientific organizers:

Prof. Dr. Martin Visbeck, GEOMAR Kiel • Prof. Dr. Sabrina Speich, Ecole Normale Supérieure - PSL, France • Prof. Dr. David Marshall, Oxford University, UK

This school has been postponed from July 2020 to July 2021 due to the corona pandemic.

Environmental Physics is a rapidly growing research area, focusing on
processes within our environment, i.e., in the atmosphere, hydrosphere,
cryosphere, geosphere, and biosphere. Physical ocean processes directly
affect the global distribution and transports of ocean properties ranging
from mass and temperature to the many dissolved substances (for
example salt, nutrients, oxygen, CO2). Ocean processes are of particular
relevance for the global and regional climate systems, and they set the
stage for marine element cycling and the marine ecosystem as a whole.
Oceanographers study the fluxes of energy and matter in the ocean using
direct observation, modeling and theory. The relevant scales range from
vertical ocean mixing at the micro scale (cm) to mesoscale stirring (km)
right up to the planetary scale of the global ocean circulation. From the
regional to the local scale, coastal seas host a suite of physical processes
relevant for understanding the effects of external pressures due to
environmental change (from climate to population growth associated with
eutrophication, dredging, and offshore constructions).

A large part of the education and training in ocean physics is done in
conjunction with related disciplines, such as meteorology, marine
biogeochemistry, or geophysics. A major goal of this summer school is to
provide a broader view of the ocean system from a physical perspective,
encompassing a large range of scales and their interactions. The
participants shall be introduced to the observations and models, theory
and statistical methods used by environmental and ocean physicists and
to their present understanding of the physical ocean system. The summer
school includes not only lectures on ocean physics, but also addresses its
interaction with the global climate, marine biogeochemical and ecological
systems, as well as overarching topics in marine research. This
comprehensive and integrative approach shall provide the participants
with the necessary basis to orient themselves in present and future large
international research programs (e.g. WCRP - CLIVAR, FutureEarth -
IMBER, IOC - GOOS), many of which specifically address the interfaces and
interactions between the ocean physics and other environmental
compartments. Moreover, the summer school is expected to advance the
interaction and collaboration between young scientists active in this
research area.

The summer school is targeted at young scientists such as advanced
master students and graduate students but also first year postdocs from
all over Europe and beyond. Participants are expected to have at least a
basic knowledge of one of the sub-disciplines of environmental physics or
marine sciences and they usually will be active in a research field
somewhat related to the topic of the summer school. They are
furthermore urged to contribute to the summer school by presenting
work of their own, generally in the form of posters and active participation
in discussion and working sessions.